Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Abundance vs Scarcity

Stephen Covey coined the term abundance mentality (or mindset), a business concept in which a person believes there are enough resources and success to share with others, when looking at optimistic people. It is commonly contrasted with the scarcity mentality, which is founded on the idea that, given a finite amount of resources, a person must hoard their belongings and protect them from others. Individuals with an abundance mentality are supposed to be able to celebrate the success of others rather than be threatened by it. (Wikipedia)

"Most people are deeply scripted in what I call the Scarcity Mentality. They see life as having only so much, as though there were only one pie out there. And if someone were to get a big piece of the pie, it would mean less for everybody else.

The Scarcity Mentality is the zero-sum paradigm of life. People with a Scarcity Mentality have a very difficult time sharing recognition and credit, power or profit – even with those who help in the production. They also have a a very hard time being genuinely happy for the success of other people.

The Abundance Mentality, on the other hand, flows out of a deep inner sense of personal worth and security. It is the paradigm that there is plenty out there and enough to spare for everybody. It results in sharing of prestige, of recognition, of profits, of decision making. It opens possibilities, options, alternatives, and creativity." (Seven Habits)

I have found this concept (which I haven't completely mastered) to be very helpful in dealing with people in all walks of life. If I believe there is enough love/respect/attention to go around, everything is not in competition. If I am good, it doesn't mean you are bad. If one gives flowers and another service, one is not better than the other and appreciating the flowers does not mean I like flowers more than service. In fact I'm usually one to value service VERY highly.

Aim high - Altitude - then cross the "l" and you have Attitude. It is scarcity mentality that makes life so competitive when joy should be shared. There is enough joy to go around. I love the song, In This Very Room by Ron Harris. I believe it was sung at the funeral of R.G. Rodgers, Jr.

1 comment:

  1. I love the concept of "abundance mentality" and have often been surprised when I've used the phrase and people don't seem to know what it means. Great idea to educate on this topic! I'm going to put this on my blog, too, if you don't mind!


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